21 February 2010

Coventry Cathedral and ...

Last weekend saw us visit Coventry Cathedral and do some exploration of the Coventry town centre. Coventry Cathedral was bombed in the second world war but instead of pulling it down and rebuilding, they left what remained as a reminder and built a new Cathedral off to the side. Instead of calling for revenge, the minister called for reconciliation and peace, a ministry that continues from the church. The empty shell of the old cathedral blends into the backdrop of the new cathedral. There is ample space for reflection in both spaces.

In the new cathedral, there was a display related to the American civil rights movement. The barriers of race may not be as great but as I read the quotes, I realised that we had not necessarily moved that far. As the quote attached suggests, we are able to create employment to support war but not to create peace.

If the last photo looks familiar, well it is because on Christmas day, we took photos of our snow covered backyard. This morning when we woke, the ground was again covered in snow. A picture that has become quite familiar over the last couple of months. When we arrived back last night from a day with our daughter and family, it seemed like we would have a cold frosty night but no snow.

There are also the first signs of spring as the snow drops struggle to poke their heads through the snow cover.

Midas has been demanding to be outside again and got his chance while we were out taking the photos of snowdrops. The snow proved a natural deterrent as he flinched as his paws made contact with the snow. Walking round the edge of the conservatory proved too difficult so he made a hasty retreat indoors. Sorry, there is no photo, he wasn't staying for the opportunity.

01 February 2010

Snow and yet...

We had thought the snow had gone but this weekend has really seen contrasts. The days have been beautiful with the sun shining but overnight it has been cold. Last night, it snowed again. As I write this, the sun streams in over my shoulder but there is a white film over everything. The temperature is being reported as -2ÂșC but there is a real beauty in the day. As I watch, the birds are feeding and conducting their mating rituals. Is this really winter or the start of a new year and rebirth.

On Saturday, we explored the inner city shopping complexes. We were looking for some specific things to purchase. But it was the architecture, the clear blue sky, and the company that turned the day into magic. Although we didn't take the SLR camera, we still experimented with some architectural / artistic shots around the outside of one of the complexes.

There is also a diversity of people in Birmingham which makes the shopping areas take on their own special character. There are also the contrasts between the modern shopping complex, the open market, the market warehouse, the old church, and the railway stations. All are pushed together in a confined space that represents central Birmingham.